2018 May 06 Sunday

2018 May 06 Sunday in Grimes Iowa

56° at 6 a.m. We had breakfast on the patio this morning. And yes, Ella had coffee today. The new coffee maker it’s much slower than Mr Coffee but it gets the job done.

While I worked at the fee booth this morning, Ella did laundry at the clubhouse.

In the evening we went for a drive and ended up in Ankeny to see our granddaughter home. We were entertained by the great grandson playing the flute, and the new kittens

MUSING – May 06 2018

DISCRIMINATION

James 2:1-4
My brothers and sisters, practice your faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ by not favoring one person over another. For example, two men come to your worship service. One man is wearing gold rings and fine clothes; the other man, who is poor, is wearing shabby clothes. Suppose you give special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say to him, “Please have a seat.” But you say to the poor man, “Stand over there,” or “Sit on the floor at my feet.” Aren’t you discriminating against people and using a corrupt standard to make judgments?

I have nothing to add to what James wrote nearly 2000 years ago. Just tell me that we’ve changed. If not, why not?

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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2018 May 04 Friday

2018 May 04 Friday in Grimes Iowa

57° in the morning under clear skies. Yesterday’s storms have moved on without causing any real damage locally. Thank you, God.

This was a boring day. Lunch was at the senior center. We stopped at the fee both to make sure I still remembered the basics on the computer. Ella also did a very short training session on the system. She had applied to work at the fee booth.

Then we came home and worked inside and out getting out home in shape.

MUSING – May 04 2018

BEING HOLY

Psalms 99:1-5

The LORD rules as king. Let the people tremble. He is enthroned over the angels. Let the earth quake. The LORD is mighty in Zion. He is high above all people. Let them give thanks to your great and fearful name. He is holy! The king’s strength is that he loves justice. You have established fairness. You have done what is fair and right for Jacob. Highly honor the LORD our God. Bow down at his footstool. He is holy!”

God is holy. We Christians use the word holy a lot. There are hymns/praise songs that just repeat it over and over. But do you know what it means? In the Old Testament “the Hebrew word for holy is “qodesh” and means “apartness, set-apartness, separateness, sacredness”*In the new testament the word “hagios” carries the same or similar meaning. The concept of apartness is clearly what the psalm writer had in mind here. God as a king, enthroned over the angels, and high above all people speaks to the vast separation between God and man. God in his true form can not be seen.**

In the new testament something wonderful happens. Jesus is born of Mary and suddenly God is with us.*** He can be seen and touched. And more importantly can and does touch us. He sits and eats with us. In other words, God now meets us on a more personal level. The separation between God in the Holy of Holies and mankind is over. (Mat 27:51) And he promises to be with us until the end of the age. *(Mat 28:20)

This does not mean that God is still not above all people but he is now also living within us. (1 Cor 3:16) We believers are commanded to be holy (Lev 11:44 and 1Th 3:13) that is we are to remain separated from sin.

*http://www.patheos.com/blogs/christiancrier/2014/05/24/what-does-the-word-holy-mean-bible-definition-of-holy/

**Exodus 33:20-23

***Emmanuel עִמָּנוּאֵל (Ancient Hebrew)

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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2018 May 03 Thursday

2018 May 03 Thursday in Grimes Iowa

59° and foggy at 4:30 in the morning. Ain’t no sunshine today.

Evidently Ella got cold during the night. I turned the heat on for a little bit.

The foggy overcast stayed with us even when storms went through. The civil defense sirens went off around 3:45 because a tornado cloud was spotted a few miles to the West of us. We, and a dozen or so others, sought shelter in the basement of the club house Just to n the South of us they reported ¾* hail. We had a short burst of pea size hail here. It is still raining at bed time but no longer storming.

MUSING – May 03 2018

ARE YOU GROWING?

2 Peter 1:4-9
“Through his (Jesus Christ’s) glory and integrity he has given us his promises that are of the highest value. Through these promises you will share in the divine nature because you have escaped the corruption that sinful desires cause in the world.
Because of this, make every effort to add integrity to your faith; and to integrity add knowledge; to knowledge add self-control; to self-control add endurance; to endurance add godliness; to godliness add Christian affection; and to Christian affection add love. If you have these qualities and they are increasing, it demonstrates that your knowledge about our Lord Jesus Christ is living and productive. If these qualities aren’t present in your life, you’re short sighted and have forgotten that you were cleansed from your past sins.”

I am trying to lose weight because, like two thirds of Americans, I am overweight or obese.* How do I track my progress? I use a scale of course. Without a scale I would only be guessing as to whether I was winning or losing the battle of the bulge.

When I was a child my mother would track my growth by having me stand in the kitchen doorway and draw a line at the current height. She would write my name and the current date. It was a simple way to track my growth.

Tracking our physical growth is easy. However, how do we track our spiritual growth? Our goal is to become more Christ like.** The author of second Peter gives us a checklist to see how we are growing spiritually.

  • Faith

  • integrity

  • knowledge

  • self-control

  • endurance

  • godliness

  • Christian affection

  • love

Jesus is our measuring device. Simply put, what would Jesus do?

*An estimated 45 million Americans go on a diet each year, and Americans spend $33 billion each year on weight loss products. Yet, nearly two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese. Obesity is a chronic disease that requires lifelong treatment and medical care.

**1 Corinthians 11:1

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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59° and foggy at 4:30 in the morning. Ain’t no sunshine today.

Evidently Ella got cold during the night. I turned the heat on for a little bit.

The foggy overcast stayed with us even when storms went through. The civil defense sirens went off around 3:45 because a tornado cloud was spotted a few miles to the West of us. We, and a dozen or so others, sought shelter in the basement of the club house Just to n the South of us they reported ¾* hail. We had a short burst of pea size hail here. It is still raining at bed time but no longer storming.

MUSING – May 03 2018

ARE YOU GROWING?

2 Peter 1:4-9
“Through his (Jesus Christ’s) glory and integrity he has given us his promises that are of the highest value. Through these promises you will share in the divine nature because you have escaped the corruption that sinful desires cause in the world.
Because of this, make every effort to add integrity to your faith; and to integrity add knowledge; to knowledge add self-control; to self-control add endurance; to endurance add godliness; to godliness add Christian affection; and to Christian affection add love. If you have these qualities and they are increasing, it demonstrates that your knowledge about our Lord Jesus Christ is living and productive. If these qualities aren’t present in your life, you’re short sighted and have forgotten that you were cleansed from your past sins.”

I am trying to lose weight because, like two thirds of Americans, I am overweight or obese.* How do I track my progress? I use a scale of course. Without a scale I would only be guessing as to whether I was winning or losing the battle of the bulge.

When I was a child my mother would track my growth by having me stand in the kitchen doorway and draw a line at the current height. She would write my name and the current date. It was a simple way to track my growth.

Tracking our physical growth is easy. However, how do we track our spiritual growth? Our goal is to become more Christ like.** The author of second Peter gives us a checklist to see how we are growing spiritually.

  • Faith

  • integrity

  • knowledge

  • self-control

  • endurance

  • godliness

  • Christian affection

  • love

Jesus is our measuring device. Simply put, what would Jesus do?

*An estimated 45 million Americans go on a diet each year, and Americans spend $33 billion each year on weight loss products. Yet, nearly two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese. Obesity is a chronic disease that requires lifelong treatment and medical care.

**1 Corinthians 11:1

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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2017 May 02 Wednesday

2018 May 02 Wednesday in Grimes Iowa

62° and cloudy at 4:30 a.m.

I seem to be back on my normal sleep pattern after the journey from Texas to Iowa. Meanwhile Ella was still asleep still trying to recover.

While she slept I swept. Remember this photo from yesterday showing all the maple buds on our patio?

Well, I swept them all (almost) away.

Okay the truck is all unloaded … now what do we do with all this stuff? I’m

feeling too old to keep lugging all of this back and forth between two homes.

Speaking of homes, I see a bird has built a nest in one of our maples. I hear the cheep cheep cheep of babies, but it took a while before I saw the adults. They are robins.

We went to the Grimes senior center for lunch. Joyce has already set up the Fast Track game in anticipation of our return to the center. We played several games before lunch.

Lunch was pork loin, mashed potatoes with gravy, mixed veggies, and strawberries.

After lunch we played bingo.

We had added somethings to our shopping list so it was back to Walmart.

Once we were home we managed to get more things put away and some more outside things taken care of.

We also got some rest. Maybe too much rest. About 2:45 Ella got a call wondering where we were. She head set up get together with some of our friends to meet at Village Inn at 2. Oops. They were really there waiting for us.

We sat and visited for quite awhile before going home and back to cleaning, straightening, and unpacking.

We had a little rain come through and the prediction of storms to follow.

MUSING May 02 2018

WHO IS JESUS?

John 1:1-4
In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was already with God in the beginning. Everything came into existence through him. Not one thing that exists was made without him. He was the source of life, and that life was the light for humanity.*

The whole of the good news (gospel) that John has to tell about Jesus is condensed into his opening statement, verses one through four. That news is that Jesus is divine.

The Jewish readers would have immediately recognized the parallel to Genesis 1:1-2 “In the beginning God created heaven and earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep water. The Spirit of God was hovering over the water. Those familiar with the Proverbs of Solomon would also have noted the similarly to Proverbs 8:22-24 The LORD already possessed me long ago, when his way began, before any of his works. I was appointed from everlasting from the first, before the earth began. I was born before there were oceans, before there were springs filled with water.” Indeed that whole section from 22 through 31 can clearly be understood as speaking of the pre-incarnate Jesus.

This thought was an eye opener (Revelation) for me. I had been taught as a child that Jesus was the angel Michael* which denies both the divinity and humanity of Jesus at once. For if Jesus is with God and is God, as John is here claims, then He truly has the power to forgive our sin**

Jesus wants to know, “Who do you say that I am?”***

*Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Michael to be another name for Jesus Christ in heaven, in his pre-human and post-resurrection existence.

**Luke 7:47-49

***Matthew 16:13-17

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

2018 May 01 Tuesday

2018 May 01 Tuesday in Grimes Iowa

58° and lightening greeted our arrival at our summer home. (See the end of yesterday’s post for our misadventures there)

We went to bed this morning just before six so there were no sunrise photos. Actually, since a short lived rain storm came through after we were in bed, I doubt there was a sunrise.

Fortunately it had stopped raining by the time we woke up around ten thirty. Our patio and deck were covered with buds knocked off of the maple trees in our yard.

We unloaded the truck and went to Village Inn for breakfast or lunch or whatever you want to call it.

We then went to Strause Lock and had some keys made. (Again read yesterday’s post)

Then it was off to Walmart for basic perishable supplies. We came home, put the food stuffs away and went back to bed.

We had just awakened when son John called and invited us to meet at Bonanza for supper. (We’re back in the Midwest so I can stop referring to the evening meal as dinner.) We had a nice long visit with John and Dawn. It was nice to get “caught up”.

It started raining as we left the restaurant but had nearly stopped by the time we got home. After we were back in bed again another short lived but impressive storm passed through.

Goodnight.

MUSING May 01 2018

YOU ARE SO SLOW TO BELIEVE

Luke 24:13-18 and 25-27
“On the same day, two of Jesus’ disciples were going to a village called Emmaus. It was about seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking to each other about everything that had happened. While they were talking, Jesus approached them and began walking with them. Although they saw him, they didn’t recognize him. He asked them, “What are you discussing?” They stopped and looked very sad. One of them, Cleopas, replied, “Are you the only one in Jerusalem who doesn’t know what has happened recently?”

Then Jesus said to them, “How foolish you are! You’re so slow to believe everything the prophets said! Didn’t the Messiah have to suffer these things and enter into his glory?” Then he began with Moses’ Teachings and the Prophets to explain to them what was said about him throughout the Scriptures.”

I have always wondered how these disciples could have walked with Jesus and not recognized him. I have heard preachers say that Jesus clouded their minds. But I see no proof of that.

I think that there are two real world things that could explain why they didn’t know him for who he was. One quite easy explanation is that his head covering (veil) was drawn across his mouth and nose to protect against the sun and road dust.* The other explanation is simply that they weren’t looking for him. They

The other explanation is simply that they weren’t looking for him. They knew that he was dead. Why would they look for him among the living?

One time I had done a kindness for a stranger. She thanked my saying, “Thank you for being Jesus for me.” To which I replied, “No, today you were Jesus for me.”**

The real question is not how those two men didn’t recognize him. The real question is, how many times have I (you) walked with Jesus and been unaware?***

*Head covering, a length of cloth around the shoulders, that could be pulled over the head and tied at the forehead. http://blog.adw.org/2017/03/sort-clothing-people-jesus-time-wear/

**Matthew 25:40

***Hebrews 13:2

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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2018 April 30 Monday

2018 April 30 Monday in Austin Texas

64° and partly cloudy while it was 57° and cloudy in Grimes Iowa at 4:30 this morning.

7:15 and we’re on the road heading toward Iowa.

8:30 stopped at rest area outside Killeen.

About 9:30 a.m. we stopped in Waco to see our friend,Larraine. She fixed scrambled eggs and fried potatoes for us which was very nice and unexpected. We had wanted a short visit but, as often happens when friends get together, time got away from us. It was about 11:30a.m. when we left her place.

By three o’clock we were in Davis Oklahoma and needing a pick-me-up at an A&W

It was nearly five pm when we stopped at Edmond Oklahoma for a potty break.

And six pm we stopped in Tonkawa Oklahoma for gasoline and a little Love’s

About 7:30 pm we stopped at China Wok in Winfield Kansas.

It was 8 pm as we left China Wok and this is what the sky looked like.

We got a little further down the road and got about shot of the sunset.

By ten we were in Strong City Kansas and in need of gasoline

It was 1:15 a.m. May first when we were at a rest stop in Lathrop Missouri.

We had a Subway breakfast at 2:45 a.m. in Eagleville Missouri

While we were eating breakfast I asked Ella if she knew where her key was for the summer trailer. She said, “Yes, you made me give it to the office.”

That was right. I was afraid that the folks at Cutty’s Camping Resort wouldn’t have a key to get into the trailer to winterize it. The situation was: I didn’t know where my key was.

Ella, smart forward thinking person that she is, had made sure that some of the family in Iowa had keys to our RV, so that they could check on it once in a while over the winter. At 3:15 a.m. she sent a text to our grandson Nathan asking him to stop by on his way to work (his work is near our campground) and let us in our trailer. She was surprised that he immediately responded that he was heading into work early because of major equipment failure at work. So we were able to stop there and get a key from him. And give him hugs.

It was somewhere around 4:30 when we arrived home. But the adventure want over yet. Ella tripped on the steps going to the trailer and the key went flying. We pulled out dry leaves from under the deck and I used a powerful magnet on a long handle to sweep through them hoping to attracted the key.

I called a halt on looking for the key because I REALLY had to use a bathroom. Fortunately, there is a shower house not far from us in the campground. Unfortunately, when we got there, it still hadn’t been opened for the season. So, back we go into the truck and down the road to the gas station convenience store. Ahhhh what a relief it is!

Then it was back home to look for the key again. Ella literally (not figuratively) crawled under the deck and found it. Yay!!!!

Once we had the door open Ella began picking up the dryer sheets (see the previous post to understand about dryer sheets) while I got the shore power, waterline, and LP hooked up and working.

Ella was still gather the sheets while I began getting some of the things out of the back of the truck. The ice chest and a storage box with important papers were carried inside. The rest will have to wait until I get some sleep.

I woke up at 4:30 a.m Monday morning and it is now 5:45 a.m. Tuesday morning and I’ve been driving most of that time.

Later.

MUSING – April 30 2018

YOU CAN RUN BUT YOU CAN’T HIDE

Jonah 1:1-3
The LORD spoke his word to Jonah, son of Amittai. He said, “Leave at once for the important city, Nineveh. Announce to the people that I can no longer overlook the wicked things they have done.” Jonah immediately tried to run away from the LORD by going to Tarshish. He went to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish. He paid for the trip and went on board. He wanted to go to Tarshish to get away from the LORD.

Have you ever wondered how God chooses the people to whom he assigns special tasks? I have. It often appears that he intentionally picks the worst possible candidate. He then says something like don’t be afraid and by the way I’m sending to the most frightening place you can think of.

  • Abraham / Abram was already a senior citizen who lived in one of the largest cities of the day. Good told him to GO but didn’t provide a map.

  • Moses the Hebrew who grew up in a palace and was tested as a son to the man who enslaved his people. He killed a man then ran and hid in the dessert. God called this person who was out of touch with his own kind, to go back to the land where he was wanted for murder. Not just go back, but to free the Hebrews form the mightiest king.

  • Gideon, who by his own words was the least of the least, of the least, of the least. He was told to take an extremely small army of 300 men into battles against 135,000 seasoned Midianite troops who had been a plague on the land for years.

  • And Jonah was told to go to the capital city of his people worst enemy. However he wasn’t sent to destroy them but to save them. He tried to run and hide but God had a plan for him.

God has a plan for you. And the odds are good that it will take you far outside your comfort zone. But remember, the battle is LORD’S you just to be faithful.

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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2018 April 29 Sunday

2018 April 29 Sunday in Liberty Hill Texas

56° here and 48° in Grimes Iowa.

This morning we’re emptying and flushing the holding tanks. Emptying and cleaning the refrigerator and last minute things before heading to church.

The youth took over the service today and did a wonderful job of it.

After the service we had a potluck meal.

After that we went back to the trailer and did a few last minute things like spreading dryer sheets everywhere. Ella and others believe it keeps mice away. I’m of the opinion that the mouse bait that I hide around in the trailer is what keeps the mice away.

I unhooked the waterline and electricity. Hooked up to the truck and headed for the storage area. I was just making a turn through a gate when the trailer slipped loose from the fifth wheel receiver. I managed to use the trailer’s electric jacks to lift it off the truck but not high enough to get the receiver back under the kingpin. I knocked on some doors of our neighbors and asked for help. Two of them had some heavy duty jacks and used them to Jack up the front end enough that I could lower the landing legs a few more inches. We repeated the process until it was high enough to reattach the truck.

Once the RV was in storage, my son, grandson, and daughter in law helped cover it with a tarp.

The family gathered at Freebird Burritos for supper and then went to Arik’s to visit.

P

MUSING – April 29 2018

MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN

Lamentations 3:21-25
“The reason I can still find hope is that I keep this one thing in mind: the LORD’s mercy. We were not completely wiped out. His compassion is never limited. It is new every morning. His faithfulness is great. My soul can say, ‘The LORD is my lot in life. That is why I find hope in him.’ The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to anyone who seeks help from him.”

Lamentations synonyms: weeping, wailing, crying, sobbing, moaning, lament, keening, grieving, mourning
“the survivors’ lamentation”

Why is there author of Lamentations grieving? Chapter one verse five gives the short answer, “The LORD made Zion suffer for its many rebellious acts.”

Jerusalem, once the shining city on a hill, had between destroyed. It’s walls broken, gates are down and the streets are empty. It’s people marched off to slavery. They had been warned … repeatedly, by many prophets. But the people had become arrogant saying to themselves, “We have become the mighty nation on Earth. Nothing can touch us.” they abandoned God and trusted in their own might and their own righteousness.

I fear for my nation for I see the same things happening here. I’m no prophet. I have no special vision from the Lord, however with my own eyes I see and with my own ears I hear the Godlessness around me.

What is the cure? 2 Chronicles 7:14 has the answer, “However, if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves, pray, search for me, and turn from their evil ways, then I will hear their prayer from heaven, forgive their sins, and heal their country.”

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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2018 April 28 Saturday a

2018 April 28 Saturday in Liberty Hill Texas

57° and cloudy here while it was 41° and clear to start the day in Iowa.

There are only 241 days till Christmas. Are you ready? Tic toc!

We started our day by getting dressed in our Make Church a Verb t-shirts. We then gathered for communion before heading out into the community and our assigned duties for the day.

About fifty members met in the original church building, which is now the chapel on our church campus.

On a completely unrelated note – There is an ozone pollution alert for the Austin area today. Ozone alert? Is it to politically incorrect to say smog these days? We did not see any signs of it in Liberty Hill, Bertrom, or Burnet.

At eleven the choir sang at Shady Shores nursing home in Bertrom. It was kind of disappointing that there were more in the choir than the audience. And part of the audience were asleep in their wheelchairs when they were wheeled in.

We arrived in Burnet well before our twelve o’clock lunch reservation at Mama’s Home Cooking, so we stopped at Mojo’s for coffee or iced drinks.

From there it was a two minute drive to Mama’s. The lunch meals were huge, good, and reasonably priced.

There was still a hour and a half wait before we sang at Country Oaks retirement home so Ella and I found a shady spot near the park to sit and wait

.

The retirement home had around twenty five residents there to hear us sing.

On our way out of town we drove through DQ for some malts. They felt good on throats well used in singing.

We come back to Liberty Hill by way of Marble Falls because I wanted to stop at Walmart and cash out some three gallon water jugs. I was informed that they did not pay for the return of jugs but that I was welcome to leave them. I’m fairly confident that I paid three dollars a piece for them. So I brought them home. I also had a box full of pennys that I ran through one of those machines and got three dollars and forty cents in exchange. Whoopie!

Once we were home Ella packed the truck while I moved things off of shelves in preparation for moving the trailer to storage.

I also moved furniture around and vacuumed under everything.

MUSING – April 28 2018

WHAT’S NEW WITH YOU?

Acts 9:1-6
Saul kept threatening to murder the Lord’s disciples. He went to the chief priest and asked him to write letters of authorization to the synagogue leaders in the city of Damascus. Saul wanted to arrest any man or woman who followed the way of Christ and imprison them in Jerusalem. As Saul was coming near the city of Damascus, a light from heaven suddenly flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?” Saul asked, “Who are you, sir?” The person replied, “I’m Jesus, the one you’re persecuting. Get up! Go into the city, and you’ll be told what you should do.”

The conversion story of Saul to Paul has always donated me. Saul was a devout Jew. A religious man s so protective of his beliefs that he was willing to kill those whom he judged to be wrong. He thought he was doing God’s will. And then he met Jesus.

Jesus changes everything. He always has and always will be the agent of change.* Some people’s lives are changed dramatically like Saul/Paul while some are just a slight course correction.

Perhaps you were raised in a Christian home and have believed in Jesus from an early age and have always accepted him as your lord and saviour. Or maybe like Saul you needed to be knocked down so that you had to look up, be blinded so that you could see.

What is your conversion story? How is your life different than it was or could have been? Have you shared your story with others? Have you shared the good news with others?

*John 1:3 and Hebrews 13:8

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

2018 April 27 Friday

2018 April 27 Friday in Liberty Hill Texas

54° with some color in the sky. At the same time Grimes Iowa was in the low 40s

Our first stop for the day was the VA clinic for my biannual check up and get prescriptions renewed.

Then it was to the Leander Senior center for spaghetti lunch and games. This gave us a chance to say goodbye for the summer to those folks.

After lunch we went to the 50+ meeting at Leander UMC for more games.

We played Rummikub and Fast Track with Ann and Joyce.

The next stop was the laundromat to do four loads of clothes. That way we will have clean clothes to come back to when we return next fall.

Once we were back home, I rearranged things stored in the RV basement and loaded a couple of trunks into the truck. We still have a lot of things that we carry back and forth between Texas and Iowa. So there is more to load tomorrow after we’re done with singing.

At least once year we participate in Make Church a Verb. This is where we go out into the community and assist people. Sometimes it is manual labor. Sometimes it is just going to visit shut-ins. The choir, which Ella and I are part of, will be going to a couple of nursing homes and singing for them.

MUSINGApril 27 2018

WHAT IS IT ABOUT “IT’S A GIFT” THAT YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND?

Acts 8:15-20
Peter and John went to Samaria and prayed that the Samaritans would receive the Holy Spirit. (Before this the Holy Spirit had not come to any of the Samaritans. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and the Samaritans received the Holy Spirit. Simon saw that the Spirit was given to the Samaritans when the apostles placed their hands on them. So he offered Peter and John money and said, “Give me this power so that anyone I place my hands on will receive the Holy Spirit.” Peter told Simon, “May your money be destroyed with you because you thought you could buy God’s gift.”

Why were Peter and John so upset with Simon’s offer to give money to them?

At least once a year every pastor in the world preaches on giving. As I’m writing this our church in Texas is starting a Capitol Campaign to raise money so that the church’s debt can be lessened. Churches, businesses, families and individuals need money – that is a fact of life.

But does God needed money? Of course not! To think that the Creator of everything, the Owner of everything, needs our money, it’s to think Him too small.

However, God allows us to demonstrate our love and obedience through our giving.* In this way we become a partner in His ministries to the world.

I’ll repeat the question I asked before: Why were Peter and John so upset with Simon’s offer to give money to them? Read the rest of Acts 8 and you’ll see that until he became a Christian Simon had been an amazing magician who claimed great power. Simon now saw real power and wanted it for himself. Simon was trying to buy something that is given for free.**

Well, if not our money, or our sacrifice, what does God really want from us? “To do what is right, to love mercy, and to live humbly with your God.”***

*Malachi 3:7-8
**Ephesians 1:7

***Micah 6:8

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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2018 April 26 Friday

2018 April 26 Friday in Liberty Hill Texas

49° with clear skies (which doesn’t make for Good sunrise photos). Mean while in Grimes Iowa it is 43°. Nice start to the morning.

Our last Over the Hill Gang until next fall. There were 51 in attendance. We had some very good lasagna.

We stayed after lunch and played two games of canasta.

Around three we arrived at home. Ella did some more sorting and packing while I worked outside. I removed the extra jacks that I use to help stableize the trailer. I also packed away some outdoor furniture.

Grandson Beket had a baseball game at six thirty. Here are a couple of videos of him at bat and stealing bases.

Heather and Austin came to the game and the see us.

I missed a really good sunset because I had it on video instead of camera. By the time I realized what I’d done, the sun was a little too low.

Heather and Austin and Ella and I went to a Mexican restaurant after the game which gave us a little time to talk. Before leaving there, Heather told us that they were going to get married.

MUSINGApril 26 2018

I WILL FLY

Isaiah 40:28-31
Don’t you know? Haven’t you heard? The eternal God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, doesn’t grow tired or become weary. His understanding is beyond reach. He gives strength to those who grow tired and increases the strength of those who are weak. Even young people grow tired and become weary, and young men will stumble and fall. Yet, the strength of those who wait with hope in the LORD will be renewed. They will soar on wings like eagles. They will run and won’t become weary. They will walk and won’t grow tired.”

My legs and feet hurt. It is early in the morning and I’m still lying on my bed. My feet haven’t even touched the floor yet.

There is a saying, “Getting old isn’t for sissies.”* At seventy one I can say I agree with that. And yet, for all that’s wrong with me I’m in pretty good shape.

I have marginal hearing, yet my Lord speaks to me. Can’t see to read without my glasses, yet the word of God is within me. Have trouble remembering, yet I know whom I have believed in. I have trouble standing, yet I’ll stands on the word of God. I am weak, yet in my weakness I am able to do all things in Christ who strengthens me.**. My body is slowly failing but my spirit is soaring.

Come fly with me.

*Bette Davis

**Philippians 4:13

All content (except quotations) © 2018 Thomas E. Williams

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